Monday, February 7, 2011
What to do with 2s?
Recipe for fun:
at least one willing teacher,
dressed to be messed,
a half dozen 2 year olds,
adorned in smocks, and
some bright blue construction paper...
In a tub,
stir together shaving cream and glue,
mixed half and half.
Be sure to add a bin of warm water for rinsing,
and some towels at the ready.
What do you get?
A whole lot of active, fun, tactile "snowy" pictures...and discovery, to boot -
Oh, I had so much fun this morning, watching these 2s touch and explore this mushy mixture. Older children will create some fabulous almost 3-D snow scenes with this stuff, shaping it into snowmen and snowballs, for example. But 2s are on the early side of that artistic control and purpose - they simply want to wallow in it. And they have so much fun doing it!
They first mashed and manipulated it only with their hands.
"Did you hear that? It squeaks! Look!," exclaimed one child, laughing.
"It's not snow, it is soap," one child explained to me.
Then, they got curious - couldn't we use something besides our hands?
What kind of designs could you make with that paint stick?
Couldn't I use that spoon you scooped it out with?
Hey, what about a paintbrush?
And what about that bin of water? Back and forth they went, from the shaving cream/glue picture to the water tub, back to the shaving cream/glue picture, and back again to the water tub...creating an all new concoction on their art papers.
Then - one child's lightbulb moment:
"We need paint!!"
In went pink paint and then some blue.
It was fascinating to watch this child's precision with where the paint should be placed on the paper.
And, of course, the tub of water was transformed.
"Hey, the water is blue now!"
We soon had a big exploratory mess...and still more fun, wiping up the floor with towels, wiping down the table.
Two year olds want in on all the action. When we let them help, they become more and more competent. It is exciting to watch.
Somehow, I think this was one of those endeavors that parents are thrilled we do at school (and is not expected at home).
Here's to two year olds!